Monday, December 27, 2010

December 26, 2010- Baptism

Leinna's great-grandmother Arlene, had her wedding dress made into a christening gown.
Leinna's God Parents- Mikayla and Pete Wilson. Mikayla is a wonderful friend from college and they are both in education like Leif and I. Please say a prayer for their family as their 15 month old daughter, Lily, is beginning her treatment to fight cancer. Since Pete and Mikayla were headed to Mayo for Lily's treatments, Leif and I decided to ask Mikayla's parents, Patty and Glen to fill in. Patty and Glen were my college parents and I loved being part of their family during those years!

Such a special day- Baptism was held at Trinity Lutheran Church, which is the church I grew up in.

We shared this special day with cousin Oliver as he was baptized too! I had double duty as I have the honor of being Oliver's God mother.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to everyone! We had such a busy few days....

Leinna, Grandma Emerson, Aunt Gina and myself went to candle light service on Christmas Eve. Yes, Papa let Momma put pig-tails AND red ribbon in her hair! Having a hard time getting good smiley pictures now that she figured out she has not one but TWO teeth on the bottom. The second one popped up two days after the first one!

Christmas morning, Leinna woke up a wee bit too early and found herself taking a nap before we even opened presents!

Grandma and Grandpa Emerson sure had a special day with all of us being home! Hard to believe this will be and was the last Christmas in the house I grew up in. 25 years of Christmas mornings in this house. Okay- need to move on before the tears start falling... We had a wonderful morning with my family and then spent the late-morning, afternoon and evening with Leif's family.
I will post more Christmas day pictures soon.

The excitement continues tomorrow with Leinna's baptism and then on to a busy week before we had back to Alaska on the 30th. So many special memories made today!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

First Tooth!

Okay, try as I might I'm unable to get a picture of Leinna's first tooth. I'm sure when the tooth is bigger I will have more success.

Discovery of the tooth~ well, everynight before Leinna takes her bath, I take a wet washcloth and rub my fingers along her gums. I had read somewhere that this helps children get use to the idea of brushing their teeth. So anyways- Leinna loves it and on Tuesday night, I noticed a "rough" spot. Sure enough when I used just my finger to feel, and then of course looked, there is a clear, little ridge sticking above her gum line! I was so shocked, and I think I might have a let a little scream out because the next thing I remember is that my mom came into the bathroom and asked what was wrong. So I showed her and she confirmed that yes it was a tooth. I had to hold back the tears as we continued with the bath routine. I knew this day would come, but I guess I was expecting more of a warning. After reading a few things and listening to other parents' stories about their children teething, I at least expecting a little diaper rash and some fussiness. Looking back now, the only thing out of sorts that I can think of as a sign Leinna was teething was the increased drooling for sure, really chomping hard on a few of her toys, really rosy cheeks and a little bit of a rash on her stomach. She still took good naps and slept through night. Feeling very blessed for such an easy going child!!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

New mommy hair do...

Okay- so I know most new mommies get their hair cut after the baby is born. I kept telling myself I wasn't going to do that. However, a dear friend of mine just found out that her 15 month old daughter has cancer. Feeling helpless and wishing I could do something, I decided to go see if my hair was long enough to donate to Locks of Love.

7 inches later

Thinking about going back and getting the back shaped into an A-line type cut. We'll see. Feeling a little lost with out my long hair, but glad to know that it's not just sitting in a garbage can and it will be used to help create a wig.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Am I still the baby?

My parents have a rescue dog named Rosco who is truly the baby of the family. Since having Leinna here, he's been a little neglected. Here he's trying to get my mom's attention while she was busy playing with Leinna. Even though Rosco feels left out- he's really good with Leinna.
Yep- finally got pig-tails in! Since Pappa will be joining us in a week, figured we better get the cute girly hairdos out of the way! I think Pappa is a little in denial that Leinna is girl. He better let me do some girly things, otherwise, I fear Leinna will turn into a true girly-girl.

Merry Christmas! Leinna's getting pretty good about sitting by herself. A few times she's even sat up with out her arms on the floor. Good thing she can practice on Grandma and Grandpa's nice soft carpet. The few topple overs we've had would have really hurt on our wood floors at home.

Monday, December 13, 2010

First Christmas Tree

On Friday, we headed to the Black Hills to pick out this year's Christmas tree. 1 hour to drive to the Black Hills, another hour to search for the perfect tree and an hour back to town. Leinna loved being in the fresh air and enjoyed helping Grandpa carry the tree to the truck.

We even got Grandpa to take a picture with us!!

Love this photo of us girls!

We wish Pappa were here with us, but he'll be joining us soon. In the meantime we are having so much fun with Grandma and Grandpa! Oh, and with Cousin Oliver too!

"Give Leinna kisses!"

Thursday, December 9, 2010

I found my toes!

YEAH!! This is one of the first moments I've been waiting for. I love when babies find their toes. I thought Leinna was going to be cursed with my short arms and long legs and never be able to reach her toes. However, she proved me wrong. Now, when she has socks on, she stares at her feet and I can imagine her thinking, "I know I have toes somewhere, but where did they go?" Papa is sure going to be amazed at home much Leinna has changed when he joins us here in South Dakota!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

South Dakota Winter

Enjoying the South Dakota winter. Notice sunshine on the top of our heads and no hats on! Yahoo!! I do realize that winter doesn't stay this mild in the midwest, but it sure is a nice change from the lovely Cordova weather.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

5 months ago...

I'm just amazed that 5 months ago I was in labor awaiting the arrival of my first child. We were very excited to hear, "It's a girl!" and that she was in good health. The past five months seem like a blur and I can only image when she's turning 18 I'll feel even more like the time passed too quickly. But for now, I will enjoy the new discoveries Leinna makes each day.

Since arriving in South Dakota almost a week ago, Leinna likes to try and sit by herself, but she either ends up leaning so far forward she look like a frog perched on a lillypad, or she tumbles over to the side. She's also still busy trying to figure out how to crawl. A couple of times she's planted her forehead to the ground and then stuck her butt straight in the air! It's so funny and I'm hoping to catch a picture of it. You can be sure if I catch the pose on the camera, it'll be posted here too! Since she hasn't quite figured out crawling yet, she has figured out if she puts the two ways to roll (back to tummy, tummy to back) together she can cover pretty good ground.

Finally, I just had to share the picture below. My Grandma Emerson often makes this face for a variety of reasons and well, it's just funny to see Leinna do this too. We were introducing carrots today and she loved them- despite the face below!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

South Dakota welcomes us home!

What a beautiful sunrise this morning. That's one of the many things I love about the midwest- the beautiful sunrises and sunsets. Oh wait, I just love seeing the bright sun period. Ha, ha... Oh, and yes in the picture above, the neighbors built a ship in their yard as a toy for the neighboorhood children!

Leinna needed her rest after a very long trip. We are thankful we made it safely (even if momma left her nice Copper River Fleece coat on the plane). We are looking forward to lots of fun with our family and friends! (Missing Papa already though...)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Play-date with Amelia

Our blogging buddy, Mrs. DillyDally, has nicked named the girls Princess Emmie-Mimmie (spelling) and Princess Daisy. Well, while Queen Sara and Queen Wendy had a wonderful talk this afternoon, the princesses had some play time too! It was quite funny when one princess would 'talk' the other would listen and then respond. In the picture above, Princess Daisy was trying to show Princess Emmie-Mimmie how to push up on her arms, however Princess Emmie-Mimmie was quite content to rest on her forearms. Or maybe Princess Emmie-Mimmie was trying to show Princess Daisy how to just sit still and relax a little! Regardless of who is teaching who, the girls had a great time together. I'm so thankful for my friend Sara and that we are able to share in this new journey of motherhood together.

P.S. - After more thought on what the Princesses were up to- I think here they were already beginning to plot how to rule the world! Ha,ha... Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Simply beautiful

The Land of Leinna was simply beautiful tonight.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Bundled Up and Nowhere to go

Couldn't resist posting this picture as winter is upon us. We've had a few clear skies which means the temperature drops. From birth Leinna hated to be swaddled, so when it comes to bundling up to go outside, she's not a happy camper.

As Leinna's personally emerges more and more I'm starting to believe she's gonna be one happy child. In addition to responding to Peek-A-Boo with giggles, she's really starting to enjoy her time in front of the mirror.

The count down has begun for our trip to South Dakota. We leave a week from Monday :D YAHOO!!!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Introducing Solids...

Papa and I have been discussing whether to introduce solid foods to Leinna or not. She's been eating rice cereal at bedtime for almost three weeks now and so we thought she might be ready for something new. Most research recommends waiting until 6 months of age, but then the articles would also quote that some babies are ready at 4 months of age. Each article did mention key things to look for to see if your baby is ready, and it seemed that Leinna met these things. So, today I had planned to make some banana muffins and so I mashed a little extra banana. The pictures below document Leinna's first experience with bananas.

In goes the first taste...

Hmmm... not sure what to think

Okay- let me try it again

Maybe not!

We actually tried the bananas again later, and she took a few more bites than the first time, but was soon ready for a bottle. I'm not quite sure she's ready for solids just yet, but it was fun to introduce bananas to her today.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Leinna can roll both ways!!

Of course I didn't have my camera ready, but tonight she finally completed the roll from back to stomach. It was nice that Papa came home early from football night and we were able to see Leinna complete the roll for the first time together. Who would have thought something so simple as rolling would make us so proud! In other news in the Land of Leinna, she's been vibrating her lips which I learned was called "raspberries" and she also makes this gasping for air sound, which makes me nervous but the pediatrician assured me it was Leinna just playing with her voice and sounds. Her four month check up went great! She's 26 inches long and 15.5 pounds. The doctor also reassured us in the fact that Leinna's spitting up is a laundry issue and not a medical issue. This made me laugh as I recalled the wonderful baby showers and thinking I would never go through all the clothes she was given- well God must have known we were going to need the outfits! The doctor did give us some things to watch for with the spitting up in case it changed from a laundry issue to a medical issue, which I was thankful for. And finally, I just have to share the picture below. I put a mirror in front of Leinna and she just started laughing and talking to the cute baby in the mirror. This was the first time she's really reacted to looking in the mirror.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


So instead of getting ready to head to Anchorage today, I spent the afternoon with camera in hand hoping Leinna would roll over from her back to her stomach.

Her first trick was to use the toy to launch herself over on her side, then she thought it was funny that she couldn't go further- almost like the toy had stopped her.

So I took the toy away to see what she'd do. Here I think it looks like she's thinking about what to do.

However, she was content to lay on her side and suck her thumb. I watched this routine for hours this afternoon- just hoping to catch the moment on the camera. Oh well, she has fun rolling up on to her side now.

Still hoping to head to Anchorage tomorrow- we have quite the storm happening so not sure if the ferry will run tomorrow or not. Hope everyone who follows this is doing well and gearing up for the holiday season! I couldn't believe when I walked into the grocery yesterday and saw Christmas decorations out and Christmas candy! What happened to Thanksgiving? Oh well- I love this time of year and preparing for the holidays- plus it also means I'm getting closer to heading to South Dakota! Okay- I'm just rambling now, must get some sleep.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween

Leinna enjoyed her first Halloween. We don't have many trick-or-treaters at our house, so we went to the Popelka's and watched Sunday night football while the trick-or-treaters came by. It was so fun to see all the kids dressed up! I wish Leinna wasn't so set in her bedtime routine- it was bath time and she let us know. There was only 4 minutes left of the game, but Leinna was ready for her bath. Next year will be fun to actually take her trick-or-treating. Enjoy the pictures below. The shirt that says "Baby's 1st Halloween" was a gift from Mrs. Popelka!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Reading with Papa

Leinna loves to have stories read to her and well Bailey is learning that if she wants any attention from Papa, she has to sit through the story too.

Other news in the land of Leinna...

Yep- we have introduced rice cereal! She hasn't had the cereal has her only meal- yet. We've just been introducing it into her bed time bottle. She really seems to like it. Before we know it, she's going to be feeding herself... boo-hoo.. I'm not ready for her to be such a big girl yet- and I can imagine the time just keeps going by faster and faster.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Everything in the mouth!

Why do children experience their world through the sense of taste. I mean honestly, my shoulder can not taste that great, let alone the burp cloth, her blanket on the floor or a toy I put in her hand. She really loves to chew on the tag of this ducky rattle toy.
I suppose I should just get use to the idea of everything going into her mouth. Leinna has certainly increase the drool factory, which leads me to my next pondering moment. Can a baby spit up drool? For the past three days she's been spitting up clear liquid. I know it's not the normal drool because she really spits it out of her mouth where normally her drool just leaks out. Ah the joys of being a new mom... which brings me to another question. Why don't babies come with a user manual? This is really challenging for myself as I like being able to go look up an answer either online or in a book. How easy would it have been to open up the baby manual to "spitting- up" and see that it's either common or a serious concern if your baby spits up clear liquid and then listing recommendations to follow. I guess it all just goes back to an earlier post I stated about trusting your instincts. Talk about a lesson in learning to trust your own gut! Looking forward to heading to Anchorage the beginning of November to have Leinna seen by an actual pediatrician for her 4 month check-up. I'm certainly keeping a list of questions to ask.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Trip to Wisconsin

A huge thank you to my mom for sending me photos from our trip to Wisconsin. I just loved the fall colors while we were there. Seeing a true fall season makes me wish I lived in the "real world" again.

We started our trip by having a quick visit with Auntie Gina, Uncle Allan and Cousin Oliver. Only Uncle Allan was able to travel to Wisconsin with us, but we are looking forward to spending quality time with them this December.

Once we arrived in Wisconsin, we were able to stay with Aunt Cheri. We were very excited to hear that Cousin Renee was going to be coming down with her daughter Ellarae. Ellarae is 10 months old- and what a fun little girl. She taught Leinna how to scream!! One night Leinna was laying on Ella's blanket and well- she wanted her blanket back. In the picture this is right before Ella layed on top of Leinna- it was quit funny.

While we gathered in Wisconsin to remember Gunny's life, it was great to introduce Leinna to the Great-Grandmas!

The trip was great. We are hoping someday we will live close to family again so we can all get together more often. For now, we are thankful for the internet and digital photos so we can keep everyone update with how life is going.